What are some of the things that stress you out on a day-to-day basis? How about finding out at the last minute that your son needs his uniform washed? Or that your daughter needs a ride back to school for an event that was never added to the family calendar? Holding family meeting once a week will prevent some of these issues and give you peace of mind about what your kids need and your own ability to juggle many responsibilities at once. In each meeting, you should cover:
1. School Projects
Talk about any school projects your kids have this week, how much time they will take, and whether they require any special materials, like poster board. If necessary, break the project into several steps and create a To Do list your child can check off as each task is completed.
In addition, you’ll want to know whether your children have any tests coming up that they need to prepare for. The best way to study
is to go over the material each night for several nights leading up to the test, rather than waiting until the night before.
Find out whether your kids are planning to buy lunch each day and whether you need to add money to an online school lunch account
, or whether they need cash. In addition, if they’re planning to bring lunch, determine up front who will responsible for making lunches and whether there are any parts of those meals that can be packed in advance. Ironing out these details at the beginning of each week will help you save time in the mornings and make the start of your day less stressful.
4. Team SportsTake a look at your kids’ sports schedules for the week. Do they have practices or games scheduled? And have they set aside some time to practice on their own and improve their skills? In addition, talk about what uniforms will be needed and who will be responsible for washing them. Finally, if you need to make carpooling arrangements, discuss your plans during the meeting and then confirm them with other drivers afterward.
5. LessonsLikewise, if your kids have music or dance lessons scheduled, you’ll need to talk about how they’ll get there and what they’ll need to bring. In addition, decide how much time they’ll need to set aside for practicing on their own, and how they’ll work that into their schedules.
6. School EventsDetermine whether there are any school meetings or events that you and/or the kids will need to attend this week. In addition, talk about events like school spirit day or pajama day that may require additional planning and/or certain clothes to be washed.
7. MoneyThis is something else you’ll need to include in your weekly family meeting. Find out whether your kids have any events coming up that will require additional cash. Work out how your children will earn that money, and/or decide on a day and time to go to the bank this week.
8. VisitsFinally, one last thing you’ll want to include in your weekly family meeting is a discussion of any upcoming visits or events with extended family members. If your kids have a visit scheduled, and they’re aware of it, you’ll want to discuss anything they’ll need to be responsible for in anticipation of the visit. For instance, if the other parent will be picking them up at school, you’ll need to be sure that they don’t get on the bus that day. In addition, if an evening visit means that they’ll have to do their homework immediately upon getting home, make sure they know that, as well. On the other hand, if your kids don’t know that a visit is scheduled and you’re not sure whether it will actually take place, it may be best not to mention it too far in advance, depending on your kids’ ages and expectations.